Donald Glover’s manager has denied allegations suggesting the rapper/actor plagiarised his hit song This Is America.
The Atlanta star, who releases music under the stage name Childish Gambino, has come under fire on social media after Twitter users began noticing striking similarities between his recent single and a 2016 track called American Pharoah, by New York MC Jase Harley.
One fan called Glover out overnight, claiming he “stole the song” from Pharoah, after the 34-year-old delivered an impromptu performance of the tune at the BET Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday night (24Jun18).
However, Glover’s manager, Fam Rothstein, was quick to fire back at the accusations.
After moaning about how statements on Twitter are quickly spread “as gospel”, Rothstein insisted, “This song is 3 yrs (years) old, and we have Pro Tools (sound) files to prove it.”
Glover has yet to address the claims himself, but Harley has made it clear he doesn’t think much of the controversy, insisting he’s flattered if the star drew inspiration from his work.
Harley took to Instagram on Monday to share his thoughts on the matter, arguing the backlash shouldn’t “dilute the message” of racial injustice still prevalent in American society.
Harley also insists the focus should remain on “affecting change in our communities and building equality”.
Glover debuted the video for This Is America online in early May (18), hours after he hosted U.S. comedy show Saturday Night Live, and it quickly smashed all of his previous YouTube records.
The powerful promo, which tackles themes of racism, police brutality and gun violence, was watched almost one million times in an hour and picked up over 12 million views within a day of its release. It has since been viewed more than 300 million times.